With Clemson’s high school football camp just around the corner, recruitment for the 2015 football season is in full swing, and Clemson football recruiting is on fire. Aside from the 22 impressive recruits from the 2014 recruiting class that have signed to play for Clemson, 20 others have verbally committed for the 2015 season.
Clemson recruiting is currently ranked second in the nation for the 2015 class by 247 Sports, just under Alabama. Both Clemson and Alabama have acquired a commit from a five-star recruit, but Alabama snuck ahead by having five more four-star recruits than Clemson. However, Clemson has actually received the most commitments out of the entire top 10 schools, even Alabama. This is a huge jump in rankings from the 2014 class, which ranked 12th in the nation by ESPN.
In the 2014 recruiting class, Deshaun Watson stands out for being ESPN’s number one dual-threat quarterback recruit. With the vacancy left by Tajh Boyd and the uncertainty of the starting quarterback position for the coming season, Watson could not have arrived at a better time. He enrolled at Clemson early to start training with the team in the spring, and has been listed as the backup to senior Cole Stoudt.
Watson wasn’t the only offensive gem in the 2014 class; Clemson recruited four talented four-star wide receivers and three four-star running backs as well. Wide receivers Artavis Scott, Demarre Kitt, and Kyrin Priester were among some of the other signees that enrolled early with Watson. All three of those early enrollee wide receivers were listed as primary backups on the 2014 depth chart, and they will each grow to become great assets to the Clemson offense.
Other standouts from the 2014 class are four-star recruits Adam Choice, Trevion Thompson, Jae’lon Oglesby, Korie Rogers, Milan Richard, and Cannon Smith. Rivals listed Choice as a top 10 running back and Thompson as a top 25 wide receiver, adding to the talented offense Clemson has recruited. To add to Clemson’s powerful defense, they recruited top 5 outside linebacker Rogers and strong tight ends Richard and Smith.
Clemson has almost landed as many verbal commitments from the 2015 recruiting class as they have signed for the 2014 recruiting class and Dabo Swinney hasn’t even held his annual high school camp yet. Two years ago at this same time, Clemson only had six recruits. In recent years, most recruits decided to become a Tiger after Swinney’s camp, but with 20 of the approximate 25 slots already filled, Clemson looks to be in great shape.
Five-star recruit Mitch Hyatt is one of Clemson’s best recruits in the 2015 class. He is ranked as the nation’s 2nd best offensive tackle, and he committed to Clemson early in February of this year. He is joined by fellow offensive tackles, #7 ranked Jake Fruhmorgen, #16 ranked Noah Green, and #28 ranked Zach Giella. They will enter Clemson just as current junior offensive tackles Joe Gore, Shaq Anthony and Isaiah Battle are on their way out.
Clemson is also stocking up on defensive recruits due to the fact that their current defensive line has a high concentration of veterans. They have just recently gained a talented four-star defensive end commit, Clelin Ferrell. When Ferrell committed, four-star outside linebacker Ricky DeBerry tweeted that he “might join” his friend as well. Even if DeBerry chooses not to commit to Clemson, they still have landed commits from four-star defensive tackle Sterling Johnson, ESPN’s number two tight end Garrett Williams, three-star safety Tanner Muse, and three-star defensive end LaSamuel Davis.
Deon Cain is also one of Clemson’s best recruits of the 2015 class. ESPN has ranked him 57th overall and as the top five athletes in the nation. Another bonus is that he can play multiple positions including wide receiver and dual-threat quarterback. That kind of versatility and level of athleticism can add a lot to Clemson’s offense. Four-star commits Tucker Israel and Kelly Bryant are also dual-threat quarterbacks.
Recruiting classes have the power to completely transform a team. With Clemson recruiting as well as it has been in several recent classes, the future of the Tigers seems like it will be a strong one. If Clemson continues to compete with top recruiting schools Alabama, Texas A&M, Auburn, Ohio State, and Florida State, they’ll be able to achieve coach Swinney’s goal of being nationally recognized as an elite and consistently competitive powerhouse team.